When Death Comes by Mary Oliver

I am back with another beauty from Mary Oliver. Please read this wonderful poem here now.




When Death Comes by Mary Oliver


When death comes
like the hungry bear in autumn;
when death comes and takes all the bright coins from his purse

to buy me, and snaps the purse shut;
when death comes
like the measle-pox

when death comes
like an iceberg between the shoulder blades,

I want to step through the door full of curiosity, wondering:
what is it going to be like, that cottage of darkness?

And therefore I look upon everything
as a brotherhood and a sisterhood,
and I look upon time as no more than an idea,
and I consider eternity as another possibility,

and I think of each life as a flower, as common
as a field daisy, and as singular,

and each name a comfortable music in the mouth,
tending, as all music does, toward silence,

and each body a lion of courage, and something
precious to the earth.

When it’s over, I want to say all my life
I was a bride married to amazement.
I was the bridegroom, taking the world into my arms.

When it’s over, I don’t want to wonder
if I have made of my life something particular, and real.

I don’t want to find myself sighing and frightened,
or full of argument.

I don’t want to end up simply having visited this world.




How can anyone not be inspired after reading these words? I keep returning to this poem whenever I feel overwhelmed by what I have to do to get through the day or when I think of creating the future I dream of. And I realize each time that it is the same for every single person. If anyone has achieved anything in life, they have most certainly gone through the same turmoils and confusions in their minds. Circumstances may vary, but the way our mind works and how our emotions go through this huge giant wheel is almost the same for everyone.

The poet makes the coming of Death a special occasion and wants to be stepping in through that door of darkness with curiosity and wonder. Like everything else in life. She looks upon time as no more than an idea and considers eternity as another possibility! Her wish is to have lived life like a bride married to amazement or a bridegroom who took the world in his arms. What a life that would be? Can you imagine? She reiterates that it is not enough to have simply visited this world. We need to make it worthwhile. She is absolutely right. Don’t you think so too?



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